The story I’m about to tell you is pretty embarrassing. For me, not you, of course. Considering some of the pickles I’ve gotten myself in, it’s not that bad but for the average Joe, it’s moderately humiliating. So you wanna hear it, huh? Okay…(deep breath) here goes:
Once upon a time (last Thursday) I decided to get my butt in gear, and kick up my workouts so I crawled out of bed at some crazy early hour and giddy up’ed. Something you should know about me is, if there is one thing I hate doing more than working out, it’s getting up early. That probably makes me sound like a total sloth but I have just always been more of a night owl. It’s not like I’m always staying up watching TV and stuffing my face with Cheetohs – okay, sometimes Cheetohs are involved- but that’s not the point. The point is, I’m very productive into the wee hours, whether it’s writing or reading or doing laundry: I just function better at night!
So, the night before boot camp, I laid out all my workout clothes, packed a gym bag with my work clothes and shower gear and set my alarm for 6am. Now, 6am might not sound that early to you but that’s usually when I’m deep in my REM sleep! I was so terrified of oversleeping or not hearing my alarm, that I woke up about eleventy million times in a panic, pressing the clock up to my un-glassesed eyes, “Is it boot camp time yet?” I gasped. “Oh no, just 2:47am.” That happened about 4 more times throughout the night and needless to say when the alarm finally did go off, I felt about as rested as…someone who hasn’t slept. (I couldn’t think of a good comparison there. I tried. But then, I gave up.)
So, off I went to boot camp, half-asleep holding my eyelids up with toothpicks (probably ones that had pierced the olives to my martini the night before but I’m too tired to remember the exact origin).
When I arrived, a “field trip” was announced. Off we zipped to the canyon for a workout. “What’s with the canyon workout?” I asked innocently.
“Oh it’s really hard, don’t base your impression of boot camp on this,” one participant said.
“You mean the trail of tears?” Another answered.
Um. Pardon? What in the H-E double hockey stick had I signed up for??
I’ll tell you what: Pain, torture, purgatory.
Down the hill into the canyon we ran, over rocks threatening to break and twist our ankles. No sooner had we run down the hill, we were running back up it. I started to lose steam pretty early on. “You gotta start somewhere,” I told myself as I huffed and puffed.
The instructor had us running all over God’s green earth down in that canyon and by green earth, I mean brown dirt. Dirt that was smeared all over us. If there’s one thing I hate almost as much as waking up early and working out, it’s getting dirty.
“Okay, guys duck your head and watch out for that poison oak!” the instructor yelled.
POISON WHAT? I hadn’t signed up for this! I was too prissy for this!!
“Now, we’re coming over here- everybody pick up a rock. We are going to use these as weights. Make sure there aren’t any snakes under there!!” The instructor cautioned.
Snakes? Now if there’s one thing I hate more than mornings, working out and being dirty- well, you get the picture. It just kept going from bad to worse!
Finally, when I had nothing left to give, the class was over. All we had to do was get out of the canyon. Instead of going out the way we came in, he had us climb up the side of the mountainous terrain. The hill was so steep, I was clawing at the dirt (and probably also poison oak and stepping on snakes but at that point I was too tired to care) to get out.
My friend Ryan held back with me once everyone else was out of sight. “Ryan, I can’t. I can’t do it anymore. My brain is telling my leg to move and it won’t do it. Please, please call an ambulance. An air lift, helicopter, parachute, I need help. I can’t do this.” I pleaded.
“You can. You will. You have to. There’s no other way out!” He encouraged. Thank God for him, coaxing me up that hill. Stopping to rest. Telling me that at his first boot camp, he was as beat up and bad off. (Doubt it). “You can do it! A few more steps!” he would call back and I lifted my limp leg with my hand and then dropped it, shuffling up one more step.
Finally, I was met with sweet victory- a miracle had occurred! Not just that I made it to the top, but that I didn’t die in the process. Not dying meaning aside from the fact that my body didn’t crap out on me, I also didn’t fling myself to the bottom of the canyon onto the rocks and to my early death as I had contemplated multiple times.
I was probably 20 minutes behind everyone else making it out of that damn trail of tears but I did it!
I bet you thought that was the embarrassing part: the part where I emerged like a limp, sweaty noodle from the canyon way behind everyone. Not even close.
But, this post is getting really long, so….TO BE CONTINUED. (Part 2 will be up later this week)
**UPDATED: Click HERE for the second part of this story
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